Online Marketing Terminology

In this article, we will be looking at the terminology specific to online marketing. We will review these terms and their definitions. Let’s start with one of the most important pieces of online marketing, your “call to action”. This is an instruction provided to your audience as a way to provoke a response. Calls to action typically use a verb such as “save now” or “buy today”, you’ll find them in banner ads, on website landing pages, and in social media posts to name only a few. As you drive traffic to your site, you will encounter what’s called the “bounce rate”, and this is when a visitor arrives to your website but leaves after visiting only one page. They’re said to have bounced, and your bounce rate is the percentage of these visitors. A bounce rate can apply to an entire website or a single page. The traffic that bounced had to come from somewhere, whether it was an advertisement or an email, you’ll want to be measuring your click-through rate. As marketers will often measure performance by how many clicks an ad receives. Every time an advertisement is shown, it counts as an impression, and the click-through rate is how many clicks were received in relation to the amount of impressions.

So let’s shift gears now and look at the term “abandonment”. This is when a user does not complete the goal you’ve intended for them, so a user is following a particular path safe to checkout from an e-commerce store or to complete an online form for more information, and then, they leave the process early. In marketing, we aim to reduce that, and that’s what we call abandonment. As you begin to scale up your marketing efforts, you will encounter paid advertising and the term ad impression. Each time your advertisement is displayed to a user, it counts as an impression, and impressions are often tied to frequency. This is the amount of time a single user will see your advertisement, so if you had 10 impressions of an ad with a frequency of 2, then 5 individual people will have seen that advertisement. When a user completes your goal, whether it’s buying a product or downloading an application, they’re said to have converted. Your conversion rate is the percentage of visitors who entered into this experience and actually completed the goal.

To understand how a user converted or when, we need to use what’s called a “tracking pixel”, and these are tiny 1×1 pixel images that are installed on your website to track conversions, website visits, and add views. Now advertising only makes sense if it brings you a positive return on investment. To discover that, we’ll look at our cost per acquisition; you may also hear this referred to as CPA or in some cases “cost per action”. This is how much it costs you per goal completion, so if you ran an advertisement with the goal of getting an application download, and that ad cost you $100, then if one person downloaded the app despite the hundreds it clicked on it, the cost per acquisition for that single user would be $100. That CPA will then be compared to your lifetime value or LTV. Every customer has a value; some will buy once and never return, others will become repeat buyers. Your lifetime value is a prediction of the net profit attributed to that relationship. Typically, with paid advertisements, you want your cost per acquisition to be lower than your lifetime value. In upcoming articles, we’re going to analyze banner advertisements and display ads, and here, we will be referring to visual images, either static or animated, that are used to generate brand awareness or entice a user to click.

Most banner or display advertisements will contain a call to action. When you run these advertisements or share an offer, it’s important that the user arrives on a page that is specific to your promotion. If you don’t use one, it’s unlikely they’ll convert. This page they first arrive on is called the “landing page”. Finally, let’s look at an organic result. When you conduct a search on Google for example, you have two types of results. Paid results which are typically the first couple of links and a handful of links on the right sidebar, and organic listings which are not paid, and instead, achieve their rank through search engine optimization.

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